I was nervous, beyond nervous. I didn’t know what to wear or how to act. He intimidated me and I couldn’t ignore that fact. He was my mate and I wanted to impress him.
Looking at myself in the mirror, I frown at my slightly smudged eyeliner that I couldn’t seem to perfect and my
frizzy hair. I was a mess. There wasn’t anyone who could help me or give me any advice. I am wearing a white dress. It's short in the front, but not too short, and long in the back. I paired it with some plain white flats. I looked nice....sort of.
My thoughts are interrupted by sudden pounding on the front door. Sighing harshly, I walk to the door throwing it open. Sebastian is poised to knock again, but he quickly lowers his hand and greets me with a grin. I gulp nervously, twitching my hands at my sides.
“Hey." He smiles, holding out a hand, "You look nice. ”
A smile up at him with a nervous expression.
“My makeup is smudged and my hair’s frizzy. My dress has wrinkles and I just want to look nice.” I complain, trying to smooth the ends of my dress down.
“Be quiet.” He frowns, shaking his head, “You look fine.”
“Fine is not going to make me better than her. I have to be better than her.” I cry, turning to retreat back into my room.
Sebastian grabs my arm and pulls me back into him.
“You look beautiful.” He whispers, “Now, let’s go. We’re already late.”
I look up at him and I open my mouth to say something, but find I have nothing to say.
“Come on.” He urges, taking my hand.
I sigh and allow him to lead me out of the house.
“You’re nervous.” He notes.
I nod my head, chewing on my lip.
"Don't be." he nudged me, "I'm here. You'll be fine."
Huffing, I allow my eyes to run along the tree line. I can see various wolves running side by side. They had to be on patrol. They were always working. Work never stopped in Westwood pack. Green luscious trees covered nearly all of the buildings, making most of them look abandoned. I had wondered why they never cut the trees, Sebastian always told me it was for protection purposes from rogues. I never thought to question it further. There are flowers blooming by the tree line and I can't help but stare in awe at the beauty. For a pack like Westwood, I had never thought it would be so beautiful and bright.
Sebastian glances over at me from time to time, but besides that we walk in silence. The journey is short. Before I know it, we are standing in front of a small clearing, where nearly everyone is standing. I breathe deeply, in an effort to calm my racing heart. I definitely was not ready for this. This was something that I would never be prepared for. Taking another deep breath, I look up at Sebastian, who is leaning against a tree trunk with a small smile on his face.
"What?" I breathe, trying to smooth the ends of my dress again.
"You're so nervous about this. It's cute." he smirks, crossing his arms over his chest.
"It's not cute, Seb! I don't even know why I'm so nervous right now!" I exclaim, running a hand through my hair.
"It's because it's Alex." he teases, "Your mate."
I roll my eyes, looking over at all the people again. The music is booming through the forest. The bass nearly causes the ground to shake. Almost everyone is in the middle of the clearing dancing crazily. It is clear that everyone showed up tonight with the intention to get wasted. Frowning, I look back over at Sebastian.
"Come on." he smiles slightly, taking my hand in his, "Let's show him what he's missing."
I take one last deep breath before fixing my face into a confident smirk. Sebastian leads us over to the drink table. Grabbing a cup, he hands one to me and starts to pour something into his cup. After he finishes he offers the cup to me and I shake my head.
"I can't drink." I tell him, "I'm underaged."
"It's water." he shrugs.
"You aren't drinking?" I ask, surprised, "Isn't that why people come to these things?"
"Well yes, but also because their Alpha says it's mandatory. Except for the warriors of course, they're on patrol." he informs, tipping the cup towards me again.
I hesitantly take the cup into my hands. I bring it to my nose, smelling it just in case. I confirm that it is in fact water and drink some.
Sebastian gives me a look, "I wouldn't give you alcohol and tell you it's water. Don't you know me better than that?"
I ignore him, changing the subject, "You don't drink?"
"Usually, yes, but I won't today." he smiles.
"Why?" I ask, tracing the rim of my cup with my fingertip.
"I'm staying sober for you, Princess." he grins over at me.
I let out a laugh.
"Thank you, Prince." I joke, doing a curtsy.
His face falls and he immediately shakes his head, "Don't call me that. I'm not a prince, even if my father was the king."
My eyes widen, "You're royalty?"
He solemnly nods his head, "Isn't that why you joked about it?"
"I didn't know you were actually a Prince!" I exclaim, "It was a joke!"
"Your Blood Alpha over there is the King." he whispers, gestures towards Alex across the clearing.
"King?!" I nearly scream.
Sebastian quickly clamps his hand over my mouth and whispers harshly, "Do not make a scene. Yes, we're royalty, but we're still the same people you met before. No need to freak out. "
I struggle against his hand, but immediately still as I hear a booming voice snarl, "What the fuck is going on here?"
Sebastian takes his hand away from my mouth and wraps it around my waist, pulling me close to him. Spinning around, my eyes widen as I see Alex standing centimeters away from us.
"I asked a question." he growls, frowning deeply.
"N-nothing." I stutter out, leaning back against Sebastian.
Alex's eyes zoom in on Sebastian's arm.
"Move the arm." he spits, his eyes growing dark.
Sebastian doesn't move away, he only tightens his arm around me. Gulping, I take a small step away from Sebastian, fearing how dark Alex's eyes fall at the defiance.
"I told you to move your arm." he roars, using his Alpha voice.
The order does not faze Sebastian. He was born with the same blood as Alex, he never has to obey, even if Alex is King.
"If you do not move your arm in 3 seconds, it will no longer be attached to your body." he orders, narrowing his eyes at him.
I look over at Sebastian, begging him to let me go. He looks down at me and locks his jaw. Taking my wrist, he pushes me behind him and blocks me with his body.
"Step away from her." Alex growls deeply, baring his teeth at him.
Sebastian pushes me farther behind him, but I fight against him. I didn't want him to get hurt because of me. He didn't deserve it. Alex snarls, taking a step towards him.
"I will say it one more time." he booms, "Step away from her. Now!"
Sebastian does not back down and raises his eyebrow in a challenge. Alex narrows his eyes even more and steps closer, towering over Sebastian. Sebastian was tall, I'll admit that, but he was nothing compared to Alex's height. Alex looked like Mount Everest in human form. He was probably even larger when he was a wolf.
Alex clenches his fist and goes to strike, but before he can, I grab the back of Sebastian's shirt and yank him behind me. My eyes are clamped shut waiting for the impact, but when I open my eyes again, all I see is Alex's fist inches from my face. He quickly back away and drops his arm back to his side.
"Are you crazy?!" Sebastian shouts, pulling me back, "He could have hit you!"
I open my mouth to reply, when Alex beats me to it.
"I would never hurt her." he growls, before turning and stalking away into the woods.
The crowd that gathered around us, was swarming with prying eyes, aching to find out why the Alpha protected a girl like me. Sending them all a powerful glare, they eventually disperse and go back to their drinking and grinding. Turning back to Sebastian, he sends me a glare.
"Did you seriously just do that?" he snaps, glaring harshly at me.
"I told you. I didn't want you hurt." I shrug, spinning around to walk back into the forest.
He grabs my wrist, forcing me to face him.
"I am stronger than you, Claire. The force of that punch Alex was going to throw could have killed you. Do you understand that?" he rants, throwing up his hands.
"Then I would have died." I huff, ripping my arm away from him.
I stalk away from him and make it to the tree line before he catches up with me.
"You're crazy, Claire!" he argues, "I don't think you understand! You could have died!"
"No, Sebastian! I understand perfectly! I could have died, I get that! And I don't care because it's bound to happen some time! I'm going to die, whether it be by the hands of Alex or his god awful wife!" I shout, storming away from him.
"Claire! You can't just go around saying you want to die!" he yells, "Alex cares about you, Claire!"
"Well he has a funny way of showing it." I grumble, turning towards the house.
Small ferns line a pathway, that I didn't even notice I was walking on. Small bushes are placed every few steps and the small leaves scratch against my bare skin.
"Claire..." Sebastian sighs, "You just have to understand. He's had a.....hard life. He's not good with sharing his emotions."
I don't answer as I shake my head. That wasn't an excuse.
"Claire, please.. I know that he's screwed up. I understand that, but think about it in a different way, he never seems to care very much about Stephanie does he? Not unless you're around right?" he asks, raising an eyebrow.
"Yeah." I mumble, "I guess so."
"Exactly! Then that means he's trying to make you jealous. I've seen them alone, Claire. He isn't happy with her and she knows it. She wants to try everything that she can to get him back and that includes hurting you." he explains, "So you can't let her do that! You need to stand up for yourself and act like it doesn't bother you."
"I think I've stood up for myself just fine, Seb." I smirk.
"Claire, I wasn't talking about you using your freakish demon powers to pin her to the wall. I was talking about verbal smack." he laughs, "If she comes after you again, teach her a lesson, verbally."
I sigh deeply, running a hand through my hair, "I don't know, Seb."
"It's the perfect way to put bitches in there place, you sass them." he jokes, causing me to let out a loud laugh.
We reach the break in the forest and we finished walking the rest of the short way without speaking. I step up onto the porch and Sebastian leans against the railway.
"Be strong. Okay, Claire?" he smiles.
I nod my head, giving him a quick hug, before heading inside and up to my room. Stripping from my dress, I hurry into the bathroom and grab a quick shower. Afterwards, I throw on a pair of sweatpants and an oversized t-shirt, before flopping into bed. Getting comfortable, I lay on my back under the covers, staring up at the ceiling.
So much had happened today and I had never had a chance to process it. Alex actually defended me. He actually said that he would never hurt me, but the depressing thing was, was that I didn't know if I could trust him. Would he actually protect me from everything, including himself, or would he just end up hurting me in the end? Could what Sebastian said actually be true? Is it even possible that Alex cares about me, much less, despise his own wife? It's unbelievable.
The distinct sound of a slamming door brings me out of my thoughts. Yelling could be heard, as well as growling from a certain wolf. I knew that it was Alex and Stephanie, it had to be. Heavy footsteps stomping up the stairs snap me from my reverie.
"Stop! We aren't talking about this any longer!" Alex orders, his voice slightly muffled by the door.
"But Alex it isn't fair!" Stephanie whines, "I'm your wife! Not her!"
"She is my mate, Stephanie!" Alex growls, "You know damn well that I have to protect her!"
"But what about me! Sebastian is always around me and you never seem to care what he does to me!" she shouts.
"No I don't, Stephanie, because I already know that you've slept with half the pack by now. What's one more?" he taunts.
"Alex!" she shrieks.
I have to bite down hard on my lip to stop myself from bursting into laughter.
"Keep your voice down!" Alex demands in a lowered tone of voice, "Claire is sleeping."
"It's always about her isn't it?!" she asks, purposely raising her voice.
"Of course it's always about her! She is my mate, Stephanie and if you can't accept that then you can just leave!" Alex roars.
"I'm not going anywhere!" she yelps, "This is my house too!"
"No, Stephanie. No it's not. You may be my wife, but this is my house. If I want you out, then I can damn well throw you out!" he replies, slamming a door.
She lets out an aggravated scream and whimpers out, "You're being ridiculous, baby!"
"Get out of my house." Alex orders in a low growl.
Another scream leaves her lips as I hear her pounding footsteps on the stairs. For a few moments no sounds are made, until that is interrupted by the slam of the front door. Sitting up in bed, I lean back against the headboard. I hear Alex's pounding footfalls again, until they become quieter as they reach my door. I can hear the frustrated sigh that leaves his mouth and I can guess that he runs a hand through his hair. After a few moments of silence, the door to my room clicks open and Alex's face appears. His face illuminated by the light coming from my bedside lamp. His eyebrows raise in surprise when he sees me propped up in the bed.
"You're awake." he murmurs.
I silently nod my head, watching his every move.
"Did we wake you up?" he asks gruffly, scratching the back of his neck.
I shake my head, biting my bottom lip.
"I'll let you sleep then." he huffs, pulling the door closed.
"Alex?" I call before the door completely slips shut.
He doesn't open the door again, but he replies with, "Yeah?"
"Thank you." I whisper, so low I am afraid he didn't hear me, but I know that he did.
"For what?" he sighs.
I can picture him pulling his hands through his hair.
"For protecting me when you thought you needed to." I mumble, a faint blush appearing on my cheeks.
"Don't mention it." he huffs.
"Still thank you." I answer, shrugging my shoulders, even though he can't see me.
"Sleep, Claire." he orders.
I sigh, laying back down in the bed.
"Goodnight, Alex." I murmur, my eyes already drooping.
The door opens once more, but I am too oblivious to know if he walked in. Before I slip into my dreamless sleep, I swear I hear him mumble a quiet, "Goodnight, Sweetheart."
The closing of the door is the last thing that I hear before I slip into oblivion.